FORBES - EX HOMELESS WOMAN MARY MURRAY INVENTING NEW HOMELESS BACKPACK "Once Homeless, Mid-Life Social Entrepreneur Works To Ease The Pain Of Living On The Street"
Mary Murray remembers being homeless. She was 15 then, and she vividly recalls the constant fight to survive.
“Looking back I had to use some savvy skills to avoid rape, death and who knows what,” she said. “Along the way I always had someone older than me that could provide helpful ideas for my survival. I slept where I could, ate out of garbage cans, then I started work as a dishwasher in a five star restaurant. Yes I did eat the scraps the servers brought me on the dirty plates. But I bet I constantly ate better than anyone I know.”
Sometimes the choices were as difficult as the living conditions. She moved in with her grandparents, and managed to graduate from high school – but at the cost of suffering sexual abuse at the hands of her grandfather. She moved in with a male friend and his father, but remained on the very edge of homelessness.
...Mary eventually got off the streets, met her future husband, and raised a child. But she remembers, still. And now at age 52, Mary Murray is a student at Miami Dade College ...Together with group leader Thang Kim, and another student, Sofia Suarez – both 20-year-olds – Murray is working on a project that centers around the creation of the NapSak, a new kind of sleeping back designed for homeless people; Kim is currently designing the prototype.
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